Essay on Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Violence Against Women of Color

3 pages
596 words
Harvey Mudd College
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At a time when Kimberle Crenshaw had to put down to writing on the conception of intersectionality, she was only retorting to two means offered in understanding our society regarding high postmodernism and universal liberalism. The mainstream centered liberal discourse was focused on discrimination. In her way, she felt that it was derisory to comprehend ways in which all the structures of supremacy and authority perpetuated all manner of discrimination that touches people who have an additional set of marginalized distinctiveness. Postmodernism in its height deconstructive phase, though deemed useful concerning gender and race as social constructs, it does not have general consent for the reality of categories or structures in any given society which is significant in addressing grounds of discrimination. Hence, a new outlook and fresh way of thinking had to be sourced which accepted the many intricate layers of discrimination which exist. Equally, the systems and categories of people of power had to be looked even if they are believed to be socially constructed. Thus, intersectionality was the new way of thinking required by the society. This study will examine the concept of intersectionality, how it is described and worked in our life experiences.

Intersectionality encirclements the inclusion of so many voices on its explanation of social reality construction. It goes further to distinguish the political potential for the unvalued information that undermines the dominant discourses and their tenacities of sighting which run counter to the ones who are normalized. Hence, in my own opinion, intersectionality refers to a framework that is used for conceptualizing a group of individuals, person or social problem that is affected by numerous disadvantages and discrimination. Intersectionality hence takes note of people' overlapping experiences and identities of an understanding of the complexity of preconceptions they do face. Therefore, intersectionality proclaims that folks are habitually disadvantaged by several sources of oppression that include; class, race, sexual orientation, gender identity, other identity markers, and religion. In practice, these sectionals aim at tackling and acknowledging oppression, privileges, and relations of ascendancies which apparent themselves in different forms. Most people who have been ignored, silenced and dismissed to use this intersectionality theory to make room for their diverse voices be heard.

Race and sexual orientation have manifested itself in our working places. Black women have often found out that it is tough to identify most of their issues under the mainstream of the white feminist movement. Apart from white feminism in the working place, they have to compound with sexism while trying to participate in actions that pertain Civil Rights. In most instances, they have been shut out by various leadership positions. Hence, the intersectional experience that entails facing xenophobia in the sexism and feminist movement in questing for civil rights, this reinvigorated all those looked upon to call for a practice of feminist that centralized all their subsisted experiences.

All in all, intersectionality is well thought-out to be crucial when it comes to social work equity. Most communities and activists are always calling and participating in dynamic conversations that center on difference experiences most people face with diverse, overlapping identities. Thus, without the lens of intersectionality, movements, and events that usually aim in addressing the injustices that are linked to one group at times may end up propagating systems of injustices towards particular groups. Therefore, intersectionality enlightens us to face health disparities among individuals' color; it provides excellent pathways for leaders to apprehend identity which is decisive in advocating the work we support.


Crenshaw, K. (1991). Mapping the margins: Intersectionality, identity politics, and violence against women of color. Stanford law review, 1241-1299.

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